Half Japanese: Overjoyed
Announcing "Overjoyed", the first album in 13 years from legendary punk band Half Japanese. One of the most influential bands of all time, Jad Fair and Half Japanese spearheaded the DIY and Lo-Fi movements, influencing countless bands such as Sonic Youth, Neutral Milk Hotel, Daniel Johnston, and perhaps most notably, Kurt Cobain (who ranked Half Japanese amongst his top 50 favorites, had them open the "In Utero" tour, and was wearing their t-shirt when he died). Without exaggeration, Half Japanese is one of the most important bands in the history of music. "Overjoyed" was recorded and produced by John Dieterich of Deerhoof, and ranks amongst the best albums of the band's catalog.
Sleeping Bag: Deep Sleep
Sleeping Bag sounds different, you guys. On their third LP, "Deep Sleep", Dave Segedy (the group's drummer, songwriter and primary vocalist) has taken the band into heavier, more epic territory. The sunny jangling guitars and fun whistle choruses are gone; obliterated in a full on fuzz-guitar assault. Dave sings, "I want to free the dog that I am." and he means it.
Segedy's signature pop songwriting style is still in full effect, now brought to life by guitarist Tyler Smith and bassist Glenn Meyers. Tracks like "Hush" and "Wrestle" exemplify Sleeping Bag's honest, bedroom-pop approach and Malkmus-deadpan vocal delivery, but compared to the sunny disposition of the previous records "Deep Sleep" sounds downright tuff. Drenched in distortion & reverb, the album culminates with the nine-minute closer, "The Portal" - an epic shred-fest, equal parts My Bloody Valentine & Weezer "Only In Dreams". It's quite an affair.
Introducing: Divorcee, the new project from Yoni Wolf and his ex-girlfriend Anna Stewart. With their self-titled debut EP, the WHY? frontman steps out of the spotlight to craft all the music himself, while Stewart sets her brutally honest lyrics to each song.
Memory Map: The Sky as Well as Space
We last heard from the boys in Memory Map with the release of their 2011 debut LP "Holiday Band". We couldn't be more excited to see them return with the release of their sophomore album "The Sky As Well As Space" on 6/10/14.
With "The Sky as Well as Space", Memory Map continue to flesh out their uniquely guitar-driven blend of indie pop. Few bands straddle song-craft and technical prowess as effortlessly as Memory Map. Using three guitars (one which cheats its way into acting as a bass), a three-piece drum kit, and vocals from all four members, Memory Map organically fuse cascading guitar lines, complex rhythms, and layered vocal harmonies into shamelessly accessible guitar pop.
In the three years since their debut, Memory Map have gained depth both in composition and production. The album simultaneously showcases the band at their most catchy ("Magnetic Center"), menacing ("Dark Freshman"), and emotional ("Order In the Waves", "Antelope Earth").
Why the three-year gap between albums you ask? Well, the delay is largely due to the popularity of a certain cat. Band member Mike Bridavsky owns and takes care of the most famous cat on the planet, Lil BUB. And because Memory Map have been so flexible in working around Lil BUB's schedule, the band is officially BUB approved.
Jad Fair & Strobe Talbot: Let's Born To Rock!
The first installment of the Jad Fair 2014 "Artist In Residence" Box-Set is the incredible album from Jad Fair & Strobe Talbot, titled "Let's Born To Rock!".
Strobe Talbot is more or less a collective of Jad's buddies, including John Dieterich of Deerhoof, Mick Hobbs from Half-Japanese, and lo-fi legend R. Stevie Moore, among others.
Son Lux: Alternate Worlds
Introducing Alternate Worlds, the new EP from producer/composer Son Lux. The EP reimagines four songs from Lanterns, and includes a collaboration with Lorde. These exquisite reinventions traverse unfamiliar terrain within remembered landscapes. Their world is both alien and familiar.
Yonatan Gat: Iberian Passage
It should come as no surprise that after years of touring with his band Monotonix, once hailed by SPIN as the "most exciting live rock band in rock 'n' roll", that Yonatan Gat would carry that same intensity in his own act. After five successful years of playing 1000 shows spanning 40 countries and 5 continents and releasing three records on Drag City with his co-founded band, the New York-by-way-of-Tel-Aviv guitarist took some time to himself in Portugal. While there, he set out to create a solo album of a different sort of beat.
Inspired by African ensembles such as Orchestra Baobab, and the early work of Brazilian psychedelic experimentalists Os Mutantes - Gat's truly amazing talents shine out on Iberian Passage, blending his punk influences with the wild improvisational spirit of Miles Davis and Charles Mingus. Gat produced the album himself; joining forces with Portuguese drummer Igor Domingues. The raw and unique nature of the recording is augmented by the incredible versatility of the shredded guitar riffs - melted between pulsing African-inspired drums. A masterful guitarist, Gat recently won Village Voice's "Best Guitarist of 2013" with a sound he describes as "homeless between the Middle East and New York."
Kishi Bashi: Lighght
Kishi Bashi is the solo project of K Ishibashi: violinist, singer, and composer. The sophomore album "Lighght" (pronounced "Light") continues and expands the sound of his critically acclaimed debut, 151a - which earned Kishi Bashi the title of "Best new artist" by NPR. Since the release of 151a two years ago, Kishi Bashi has toured relentlessly, captivating audiences across the globe with his loop-based live show, and fostering a groundswell of devotees. Following stints with Regina Spector, Sondre Lerche, and of Montreal (where he was a full-time band member & co-producer), in late 2012 K decided to focus solely on his own music, and began embracing the more developed compositions and arrangements heard throughout the new album.
Mike Adams At His Honest Weight: Best of Boiler Room Classics
Many have been waiting for Mike Adams’ follow-up to his critically acclaimed debut Oscillate Wisely since 2009 and we are proud to say that Best of Boiler Room Classics is definitely worth the wait. The thoughtful, hard work that went into this record has resulted in something truly special, like a Midwestern Tusk made by fun, lovable people who actually get along really well. Best of Boiler Room Classics has the subtle, earnest warmth of an album like the Clientele’s Strange Geometry but with the arena-ready grandeur of ELO’s Out Of The Blue. While there is an unforgettable instant catchiness to these songs, the depth of Adams’ songwriting, both lyrically and musically, makes repeated listens to these timelessly brilliant songs a true delight. What if the GBV albums on TVT had been produced by Cowboy Jack Clement?What if The Wonders songs in That Thing You Do were actually performed by The Pernice Brothers? What if Dee Dee Ramone wrote “Late For The Sky” instead of Jackson Browne? What if Todd Rundgren engineered a Cass McCombs record? Find out on April 29 at your local record store!
Busman's Holiday: A Long Goodbye
Lewis and Addison Rogers are brothers who make pop-music together. When they do this, they go by the name Busman’s Holiday. Lewis plays guitar, and Addison plays his modest drum kit, complete with suitcase-bass-drum. Independently, the brothers have performed with artists such as Jens Lekman and Sleeping Bag. “A Long Goodbye”, the first proper album from Busman’s Holiday was recorded by Mark Lawson (Arcade Fire) and mixed by Drew Vandenberg (Toro Y Moi, Kishi Bashi). The band has been featured on WNYC’s Radiolab. RIYL: Kishi Bashi, Paul Simon, Randy Newman, Van Dyke Parks, music!
Hew Time: Hew Time
Hew Time is the all-drumming project from Dale Crover, Joe Plummer, and Coady Willis. You may know these dudes from their amazing other bands: Melvins, Modest Mouse, Big Business, The Black Heart Procession, The Shins, Murder City Devils, and... who are we forgetting... oh yes, Nirvana.
"I heard Max Roach's M'Boom 14 years ago and I've wanted to make my own version with drummers I love ever since. Dale, Coady and I carved out our own compositions built from a combination of drum kits and dozens of percussion instruments. I couldn't be prouder of the end result. Thank you for the inspiration Mr. Max Roach. It's Hew Time!" - Joe Plummer